WILMINGTON, Ohio - Taylor Huffman, the reigning Ohio Athletic Conference (OAC) Offensive Player of the Week, connected with Tiffany Hayes for the game's only goal in the 67th minute to lift the Wilmington College women's soccer team to a 1-0 victory over Baldwin Wallace University (BW) in an OAC Tournament quarterfinal on Tuesday evening.
The win was the Fightin' Quakers' first victory in the OAC Tournament in 13 seasons.
"They came out harder than we expected," Head Coach Steve Spirk said. "They played differently than we expected after playing them the first time, and I think we did a good job adjusting to that."
After a scoreless first half that saw both teams fire six shots, the Yellow Jackets, looking to avenge a 4-1 defeat at the hands of the Quakers, did see the ball enter the net in the 52nd minute, but Baldwin Wallace was flagged for an offside violation. Wilmington responded by firing five of its 13 shots in the game over the next six minutes. Only one would find its target, however, and Maddie Hofmann made the save on the Heidi Edens' shot.
Ten minutes later, the host's pressure at the time would pay off. A through ball got sent passed the Baldwin Wallace defense. Hofmann made the decision to charge it, but Taylor Huffman beat her to it and flicked the ball to teammate Tiffany Hayes, who was making a run down the middle of the field. Hayes simply dribbled the ball into the open net.
That shot would be Wilmington's final shot of the game. BW would fire 14 shots over the final 20-plus minutes, but none could beat Lauren Galloway, who made three saves in the final three minutes.
"The back line held strong with the pressure in the second half," said Spirk. "Lauren had a crucial save in the last few minutes."
BW finished with a 23-13 edge in total shots as well as a 10-5 edge in shots on goal. Galloway made all 10 saves, however, to earn the win while Hofmann took the loss. Wilmington countered with a 10-4 edge in corner kicks.
Edens took eight shots including three on goal for Quakers while Morgan Gray and Kaitlin McGuire both took four shots for the Yellow Jackets.
"Ultimately, we capitalized on the best chance we had," Spirk said. "It's exciting to have made it this far in such a crazy year."
Wilmington (5-4-2) will head to Otterbein University, the top seed in the OAC Tournament, for a semifinal on Thursday evening.